Pestilential as anything

Democracy battles on in the face of adversity in Queensland and (at least for now) Tasmania, as a poll finds most Australians believe the media is exaggerating the crisis (at least for now).

The campaigns for Queensland’s local government elections and Currumbin and Bundamaba state by-elections next Saturday are proceeding in the most trying of circumstances. My guides to the by-elections can be found on the sidebar; I’ll find something to say about the Brisbane City Council elections, which I have thus far neglected entirely, later this week. Updates:

• The Electoral Commission of Queensland relates that 560,000 postal vote applications have been received for the statewide local government elections, which compares with 260,680 postal votes cast at the previous elections in 2016. However, not all applications will result in completed votes being returned – the conversion rate in Queensland at last year’s federal election was 86.0%. There have also been more than 500,000 pre-poll votes, exceeding the 435,828 cast in 2016 with a week left to go. To those understandably reluctant to turn out on so-called polling day next Saturday, the commission has been expanding opening hours at pre-poll booths. All of which will make the results that come in on Saturday night particularly hard to follow.

• A ban has been imposed on the dissemination of how-to-vote cards and canvassing for votes at polling booths. Booth supervisors may allow the material to be displayed at the booths “in a manner deemed appropriate”.

Elsewhere:

• An international poll by Ipsos on attitudes to coronavirus finds 34% of Australians strongly agree, and 35% somewhat agree, with closing borders until the virus “is proved to be contained”, which is about average among the twelve nations surveyed. The survey has been conducted over four waves going back to early February, in which time the number of respondents identifying a very high or high threat to them personally has risen from around 10% to 23%. However, Australians recorded among the highest response in favour of the proposition that the media was exaggerating about the virus, which actually increased over the past fortnight from the high forties to 58%. A notable outlier in respect of all questions is Italy, where only 29% now say the media is exaggerating the threat, slumping from around 80%.

• Tasmanian Attorney-General Elise Archer announced this week that May 2 elections for the Legislative Council seats of Huon and Rosevears are “safe to proceed”, with “significant measures being put in place to maintain public safety”.

• A Roy Morgan SMS poll of 974 respondents asked whether respondents trusted or distrusted a list of current and former politicians that included Jacinda Ardern, but was apparently otherwise entirely Australian. All we are given at this stage is a top ten list of the best net performers, which is headed by Jacinda Ardern and otherwise notable for not including a single male conservative. However, this is all pretty useless without hard numbers, which will apparently be forthcoming “in coming days”.

Author: William Bowe

William Bowe is a Perth-based election analyst and occasional teacher of political science. His blog, The Poll Bludger, has existed in one form or another since 2004, and is one of the most heavily trafficked websites on Australian politics.

2,185 comments on “Pestilential as anything”

  1. Oh well, I guess as a result of all this we will probably see the end of the term ‘Dole Bludgers’. There’ll be too many people on the Allowance who usually vote Liberal who will resent that mightily.

  2. Lizzie
    Daughter has had discussion with boss and is not returning to work till this is all over. Boss has said she can get her job back then as she understands her concerns, boss was apparently very surprised to find she was responsible for making sure that customers followed the rules. Part of my daughters anxiety is down to not having any control, everyone is at danger because too many people don’t understand or just don’t care about anyone but themselves.
    Kayjay while I like your suggestion from what I’m hearing you’d need to shoot half the town.

  3. Terminator
    Monday, March 23rd, 2020 – 5:57 pm
    Comment #1803

    “#BREAKING A dramatic increase in less than 24 hours… 17 new cases confirmed today in the Hunter New England Health Area”- Not good news for us hey KayJay?

    Its good to know this information. Lets see now, licking his indelible pencil,
    17,34,68,137,278 tra la la.

    All together now

    News on ABC and NBN (Newcastle) is heartbreaking.

  4. “I really hope WA will help them.”

    Feed them, fuel them up. That seems fine.

    If they need to get off the ship to return home, they should go from the ship, straight to a bus and into a flight home.

    Otherwise on the so seems as good a place to quarantine as any.

  5. C@tmomma says: Monday, March 23, 2020 at 6:25 pm
    “I could type up a page of ‘The Green New Deal’ every day for people’s edification. ”
    I could work on “Scott Visits a Nuclear Reactor.”

  6. And for those fond of an omnibus, this went through just now…

    4CORONAVIRUS ECONOMIC RESPONSE PACKAGE OMNIBUS BILL 2020

    GUARANTEE OF LENDING TO SMALL AND MEDIUM ENTERPRISES (CORONAVIRUS ECONOMIC RESPONSE PACKAGE) BILL 2020
    AUSTRALIAN BUSINESS GROWTH FUND (CORONAVIRUS ECONOMIC RESPONSE PACKAGE) BILL 2020
    ASSISTANCE FOR SEVERELY AFFECTED REGIONS (SPECIAL APPROPRIATION) (CORONAVIRUS ECONOMIC RESPONSE PACKAGE) BILL 2020
    STRUCTURED FINANCE SUPPORT (CORONAVIRUS ECONOMIC RESPONSE PACKAGE) BILL 2020
    APPROPRIATION (CORONAVIRUS ECONOMIC RESPONSE PACKAGE) BILL (NO. 1) 2019-2020
    APPROPRIATION (CORONAVIRUS ECONOMIC RESPONSE PACKAGE) BILL (NO. 2) 2019-2020
    BOOSTING CASH FLOW FOR EMPLOYERS (CORONAVIRUS ECONOMIC RESPONSE PACKAGE) BILL 2020

  7. And the technocrats would appreciate these bills passed on the voices…

    8MESSAGES FROM THE GOVERNOR-GENERAL, PROPOSED EXPENDITURE AND APPROPRIATION FOR YEAR 2020-2021—

    SUPPLY BILL (NO. 1) 2020-2021
    SUPPLY BILL (NO. 2) 2020-2021
    SUPPLY (PARLIAMENTARY DEPARTMENTS) BILL (NO. 1) 2020-2021

  8. Kronomex says:
    Monday, March 23, 2020 at 6:38 pm

    C@tmomma says: Monday, March 23, 2020 at 6:25 pm
    “I could type up a page of ‘The Green New Deal’ every day for people’s edification. ”
    I could work on “Scott Visits a Nuclear Reactor.”
    _______________
    I am willing to conduct a masterclass on Bill Shorten’s career as union leader: “From Cleanevent to Theiss John-Holland: Dirty Deals Done Dirt Cheap.

  9. Assantdj
    Monday, March 23rd, 2020 – 6:35 pm
    Comment #1853

    Best wishes to you – daughter and families.

    With a repeat

    Directed toward Mr. Stuart Robert – just for the hell of it – although in all fairness his brain has suffered a “Denial of Service Attack”.

    Goodnight all. 📺💤

  10. C@T
    Nice in theory but if the last recession is anything to go by then the term will likely to be used more but maybe this time will be different because the reactionaries hold office. The Paxons were mid-1990s

  11. Of course we still have the unrepresentative swill to consider the bills.

    And with Senator Andrew Bragg spreading Jimmy Niggles wedding guests present to Senator Rex Patrick, and Penny Wong and Tony Sheldon self isolating – we may need the ratbag benches to vote in support.

  12. GUARANTEE OF LENDING TO SMALL AND MEDIUM ENTERPRISES (CORONAVIRUS ECONOMIC RESPONSE PACKAGE) BILL 2020
    AUSTRALIAN BUSINESS GROWTH FUND (CORONAVIRUS ECONOMIC RESPONSE PACKAGE) BILL 2020
    ASSISTANCE FOR SEVERELY AFFECTED REGIONS (SPECIAL APPROPRIATION) (CORONAVIRUS ECONOMIC RESPONSE PACKAGE) BILL 2020
    STRUCTURED FINANCE SUPPORT (CORONAVIRUS ECONOMIC RESPONSE PACKAGE) BILL 2020
    APPROPRIATION (CORONAVIRUS ECONOMIC RESPONSE PACKAGE) BILL (NO. 1) 2019-2020
    APPROPRIATION (CORONAVIRUS ECONOMIC RESPONSE PACKAGE) BILL (NO. 2) 2019-2020
    BOOSTING CASH FLOW FOR EMPLOYERS (CORONAVIRUS ECONOMIC RESPONSE PACKAGE) BILL 2020

    If you’re not a small/medium enterprise, a business, or an employer they’ve got nothing for you.

  13. So the House goes home, for how long?

    11LEAVE OF ABSENCE TO ALL MEMBERS

    Mr Porter (Leader of the House) moved—That leave of absence be given to every Member of the House of Representatives from the determination of this sitting of the House to the date of its next sitting.

  14. A certain prime minister knows all about Hawaii. Perhaps he should go there immediately and personally escort the Australian passengers home.

    The cruise ship, which has more than 280 Australians on board, has been given permission to dock in Hawaii, where the passengers will be allowed to disembark and fly home.

    The Norwegian Jewel left Sydney in late February for a 23 day cruise to Fiji, but has since been turned away from multiple ports in the Pacific.

    Foreign Minister Marise Payne says it’s expected to arrive this evening following negotiations between the cruise company and local authorities. (ABC updates)

  15. Boerwar says
    Monday, March 23, 2020 at 6:05 pm

    bc

    A-historical bullshit abounds.

    More Turks died than any other nation on Gallipoli.
    Extraordinary bravery in defending their homeland from the invaders.

    On the Allied side, more french soldiers (aka cheese eating surrender monkeys) died on Gallipoli than any other nationality.

    Who knew?

    We also don’t hear much about the Indian Army contribution. They landed on the 25th as well.

    Countries Dead Wounded Missing/POW Total
    Ottoman
    Empire 56,643 97,007 11,178 164,828
    United Kingdom 34,072 78,520 7,654 120,246
    France 9,798 17,371 — 27,169
    Australia 8,709 19,441 — 28,150
    New Zealand 2,721 4,752 — 7,473
    British India 1,358 3,421 — 4,779
    Newfoundland 49 93 — 142
    Total (Allies) 56,707 123,598 7,654 187,959

    About the only common myth that probably holds true is that of the incompetance of the British senior offices (although Hamilton seems to had a clue, but failed utterly to command his subordinate officers).

    One thing that’s not a myth is the terrible waste that is war.

  16. Something is saying to me that the government is approaching all this from the wrong angle (everybody faints in surprise).

    This mockery that people who lose their jobs because of the virus can apply for compensation seems upside-down to me, when the bulk of the benefit seems aimed at businesses.

    Why not simply guarantee a basic wage (yes, I’m talking dirty here) to the workers in all businesses that have to close down, and include the bosses, so that no one can starve? Start from there and then look at some way of supporting the businesses themselves with loans or whatever.

    Nah, I’m being silly.

  17. citizen @ #1869 Monday, March 23rd, 2020 – 5:50 pm

    A certain prime minister knows all about Hawaii. Perhaps he should go there immediately and personally escort the Australian passengers home.

    The cruise ship, which has more than 280 Australians on board, has been given permission to dock in Hawaii, where the passengers will be allowed to disembark and fly home.

    The Norwegian Jewel left Sydney in late February for a 23 day cruise to Fiji, but has since been turned away from multiple ports in the Pacific.

    Foreign Minister Marise Payne says it’s expected to arrive this evening following negotiations between the cruise company and local authorities. (ABC updates)

    Yeah, he’ll get them on the first available flight home.

  18. bc

    ‘About the only common myth that probably holds true is that of the incompetance of the British senior offices (although Hamilton seems to had a clue, but failed utterly to command his subordinate officers)’

    Hamilton was (a) from the ‘right’ class (b) demonstrably brave and (c) a proven leadership dud from the Boer War.

    Hamilton was exactly the wrong person at a key time.

  19. Lizzie
    The government can do both but when it comes to bailing out qantas or any business there does need to be strings attached and it should look to get a return on that investment.

  20. Queen Victoria
    @Vic_Rollison
    ·
    22m
    When Rudd announced the GFC stimulus package, people received their cash immediately. What is the hold up @ScottMorrisonMP? You’re asking people not to panic. They’re going hungry! Would you panic if you were hungry? Do something.

    The difference is in the ‘improved’ welfare structure, I assume? They’re so scared a few people might receive money they don’t ‘deserve’.

  21. Very technical but High Court to hear a case about the correct forum, if any, for 50 refugee cases against the Commonwealth to be heard concerning allegations of negligent treatment.

    I’m going to go with no forum, much more my reflection on the nature and quality of the HC bench than the underlying legal issues.

  22. Stephen Koukoulas
    @TheKouk
    ·
    47m
    Just confirming. The govt has yet to pay out any stimulus money.
    Zilch. Zip
    The structure of the packages deferring the start is a huge mistake

  23. One last comment.

    There are many examples where children have been taken away from school for a year and have benefited by widening their experience outside. It might not be suitable for everyone (neither children nor parents) but Scomo is talking as if it would be the end of the world.

  24. Paul Karp
    Back to the Senate now. Greens senator, Nick McKim, has spoken on the coronavirus stimulus bills, calling for Australia to “leave nobody behind” and not to go back to business as usual afterwards.

    “We can’t have rampant inequality in the good times and socialising the losses in the bad times,” he said, calling for Australia to create “a more caring economic and social framework”.

    McKim is rattling off statistics to show times were tough for some – even “before the crisis” – citing rates of homelessness, rental stress, and insecure work.

    On the bills themselves, McKim says they are “not guided by the neoliberal ideology … [because] the ideology of free markets is completely and provably unable to look after people, [it] destroys nature, and it does that in the good time and the bad”.

    McKim calls on the government to adopt a similar whole-of-society approach to climate change, noting that global heating will cause an estimated $630tn of damage over a century, dwarfing Covid-19.

    The Greens have submitted many sheet of amendments to extend the corona supplement to students and close other gaps in eligibility.

    Labor’s Kristina Keneally has commended the objective of these and said Labor also raised these with the government – but there is no point passing them in the Senate if they will be rejected by the government in the lower house. So they are doomed.

  25. The Guardian

    Keneally says the government has not addressed some gaps and concerns identified by Labor:

    There is no “substantial support to protect jobs or guarantees business receiving support will keep people on”.
    Concerns the measures will “arrive too late”.
    Renters have no direct support (yet – wait til national cabinet on Tuesday).
    Students are “highly vulnerable” but there is no coronavirus supplement for them, even if their hours are cut.
    No provisions for 1.6m temporary visa holders “soon to be trapped here with no income and no access to income support”.
    Provisions to access superannuation “at the bottom of the market” as a “last resort” suggest the government has not done enough to support people.

    Keneally flags that the government is considering a possible Labor amendment about the income test for safety measures.

  26. Labor’s Kristina Keneally has commended the objective of these and said Labor also raised these with the government – but there is no point passing them in the Senate if they will be rejected by the government in the lower house. So they are doomed.

    There is no fight Labor won’t run from.

  27. I honestly didn’t think it would be possible for any government in a crisis like this to come out of it less popular than when it started…

    But jee whiz, this Morrisson govt sure is giving it a red hot go

  28. lizzie @ #1882 Monday, March 23rd, 2020 – 6:07 pm

    One last comment.

    There are many examples where children have been taken away from school for a year and have benefited by widening their experience outside. It might not be suitable for everyone (neither children nor parents) but Scomo is talking as if it would be the end of the world.

    As a 13 year old I was beset with a number of unrelated but coincidental illnesses. As a result my 8th year of schooling was “interrupted”. At one point I spent 3 months in bed at home. But I returned to school. I finished the year. I caught up. I did OK. I went on to Uni. I had a good life. Still do. School is not a goal it is a means.

  29. WeWantPaul @ #1883 Monday, March 23rd, 2020 – 7:12 pm

    Labor’s Kristina Keneally has commended the objective of these and said Labor also raised these with the government – but there is no point passing them in the Senate if they will be rejected by the government in the lower house. So they are doomed.

    There is no fight Labor won’t run from.

    labor doesn’t run, they tend to dissolve into the background……

  30. From my various contacts I would have to say that the Morrison packages are having zilch immediate impacts: they are not slowing job losses by a day.

    They are not slowing business closures by a day.

    My observations give scattered and anecdotal information about the Centrelink queue formation.

  31. Peter Dutton’s stronger borders…

    “A Tamworth man who contracted coronavirus onboard the Ruby Princess says he was waived through customs with no health checks after returning to Sydney on the infectious cruise ship.

    Greg Butler, 56, arrived back in Sydney on Thursday and said authorities waved passengers through security without taking their temperature.

    “They didn’t check bags, they didn’t check passports… We could have brought a bag of heroin in and walked straight through with it,” he said.

    Mr Butler said he travelled home on public transport and was notified the next day of the confirmed cases onboard before starting to feel symptoms himself – a bad headache, cough and “pins and needles.”

    “They’ve just let nearly 3000 people into the city, god knows how many people had the virus.”

    Meanwhile, ADF personnel have been deployed in “Contract Tracing Support Teams” to help NSW Health officials track down Ruby Princess passengers.

  32. ‘sprocket_ says:
    Monday, March 23, 2020 at 7:19 pm

    Peter Dutton’s stronger borders…

    “A Tamworth man who contracted coronavirus onboard the Ruby Princess says he was waived through customs with no health checks after returning to Sydney on the infectious cruise ship.

    Greg Butler, 56, arrived back in Sydney on Thursday and said authorities waved passengers through security without taking their temperature.

    “They didn’t check bags, they didn’t check passports… We could have brought a bag of heroin in and walked straight through with it,” he said.

    Mr Butler said he travelled home on public transport and was notified the next day of the confirmed cases onboard before starting to feel symptoms himself – a bad headache, cough and “pins and needles.”

    “They’ve just let nearly 3000 people into the city, god knows how many people had the virus.”

    Meanwhile, ADF personnel have been deployed in “Contract Tracing Support Teams” to help NSW Health officials track down Ruby Princess passengers.’

    Is big cock up.

  33. Labor won’t do a bayonet charge into a proverbial machine gun nest ?
    I’m glad some whacko’s from around here aren’t in charge
    Tally Ho

  34. Mundo
    The Liberals need to own the mess they are about to create. Labor stopped us doing what needed to be done is door that should remain closed.

  35. Little Jackie paper loved that rascal Puff, and brought him strings and sealing wax and other fancy stuff, oh, Puff the magic dragon…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *